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Judge rules jurors may hear of Madoff office love affairs

Sept. 25, 2013 at 3:42 PM

NEW YORK, Sept. 25 (UPI) -- Jurors may hear testimony about alleged affairs by convicted Ponzi schemer Bernie Madoff and others in his office, a federal judge in New York has ruled.

U.S. District Judge Laura Taylor Swain rejected a motion by prosecutors to bar jurors from hearing evidence Madoff was involved in a love triangle with one of the defendants and of other office romances, the New York Post reported Tuesday.

Swain denied the request as "premature," noting that evidence indicated "the alleged romantic relationships are ongoing."

The trial of the five defendants is scheduled to begin Oct. 7. Facing a variety of charges related to Madoff's multibillion-dollar Ponzi scheme activities are his former secretary Annette Bongiorno, office worker Joann Crupi, former operations officer Daniel Bonventre, and computer programmers George Perez and Jerome O'Hara.

Bongiorno and Crupi are charged with conspiracy, securities fraud, tax evasion and falsifying records.

Bonventre, Perez and O'Hara are charged with creating false books and records. Bonventre is also charged with conspiracy fraud and tax-related charges.

Madoff is serving a 150-year sentence in federal prison.

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